In Jacksonville, Florida a living will, also identified as a "healthcare directive" is a document which lays out directions for your family and your doctor regarding healthcare matters should you become so ill that you are unable to make or express such decisions.
This can be very advantageous in avoiding disagreements between family members who otherwise might not know what your wishes on this subject are.
For instance, many people state that they would not want to be kept alive by artificial means if they are in a vegetative state, and have no decent chance of recovering. Others, however, would like to be kept alive if they have any chance, no matter how small, of recovery. If your wishes on this matter aren't known, your doctor or family members might have no idea what you would have wanted, and may make a determination that goes against your wishes.
This can lead to conflicts between loved ones, some of whom might want to keep the patient on life support, while others believe that he or she would not want to be kept alive in such a state. If the patient's wishes had been made clear beforehand in a legally-binding document, such infighting could be prevented.
How to Create A Living Will in Jacksonville, Florida
Before taking any steps to formulate a living will, you should make your wishes known to your family. While it's ultimately your decision (and your family will probably recognize that), they will likely appreciate having their opinions heard. Additionally, implementing a living will can be much easier if the family already knows what it says, with the document simply making it legally-binding.
The next step in the process is to truly write the living will. While you might be able to draft a valid living will by yourself, to ensure that no problems come up after it's too late, you should pursue the counsel of a Jacksonville, Florida attorney who drafts wills.
Usually, living wills need to follow the same formalities as testamentary wills (wills that dictate how one's property is to be distributed after death).
While these procedures are not identical between individual states, there are some common similarities. For instance, both testamentary and living wills typically need to be witnessed and signed by 2 people who have no direct interest in your will.
Do I Need A Jacksonville, Florida Living Will Attorney?
The assistance of a reliable Jacksonville, Florida attorney is never a bad idea, even if it's not absolutely necessary. There are typically nuances in state and local law on this subject which laypersons will not be aware of, but with which an attorney will be intimately familiar.